Thursday, July 8, 2010

Kapre Sighting in the Philippines

About a week and a half ago, I was out with a friend enjoying a beverage. A tall man sitting nearby joined our conversation, which eventually turned towards bigfoot (as my conversations usually do). Giving him my card, I invited him to contact me with anything interesting he hears about the subject. I'm glad I did, as the following email from the man is quite interesting:

My wife is from a fairly remote part of the Philippines- Southern Leyte in the region known as the Visayas. Her town is in the province of Malalitbog. Her village is Timba.

Often the male members of the family go out fishing in Sugod Bay at night. One such night, Gemma was awakened around pre-dawn and thought that her father had gotten wet and had hung some dark pants on the porch area (note: their old thatch house is mostly open). When she asked her father about it in the morning he told her that the fishing was bad and that they had returned early. So they went outside where she thought she saw the dark pants and they found a very large footprint. Then some of the other villages came running up from the bay and said that they found another large footprint close to the shore.

She referred to the animal as the Kapre. Apparently there are a fair number of sightings. I'm not sure about the legend of them smoking, but who knows?

I had never heard of the kapre, as my specific interest lies in the North American sasquatch. However, I am a fan of all things bigfoot, so I looked it up. Apparently, the kapre is a 7 to 9 foot tall hairy, man-like "tree demon" that has much in common with our local bigfoots. There are also several common mythological aspects to the kapre that can be found in other cultures' view of various hairy bipedal hominoids, such as enchanting humans so they become lost, or wearing loincloths. Kapres are also reported to smoke cigars and have glowing red eyes.

An artist's rendition of the kapre.

The "tree demon" aspect caught my attention. It immediately brought to mind the legend of the splintercat, a hairy (possibly feline) monstrosity that leaps from tree to tree and screams in the night. Nearby one of my favorite bigfooting spots on the Roaring River is a small tributary called Splintercat Creek. I believe this is yet another geographical bigfoot reference. However, more on the splintercat in a later blog...


  1. Cliff, my wife had a sighting of such a creature on Cebu, in 1985. She is currently working with an artist, who has kindly offered to do a portrait of what she witnessed. I have also heard from other witnesses on Cebu and on Samar, and have contacts in various locales in the RP, that are keeping their ears open for any additional info. Always happy to share with other interested folks.

    1. I saw it when I was 9,

  2. they are fallen angels...

  3. This is so interesting. I'm a huge fan of Finding Bigfoot and have always been faschinated by the phenomena. It was only recently after some internet research that I discovered that the legend of the local Kapre is so similar in characteristic to North America's "bigfoot". I live in Luzon and there are several areas I've found on the net that have had some noted "kapre activity". The areas surrounding Mount Maria Makiling (Southern Luzon) and some rural areas of Bulacan Province (Northern Luzon) have reports of kapre sightings. If you check out other sites Cliff there are some interesting, albeit scarcely few, stories about kapre and how it could actually be a local Philippine Bigfoot.

  4. Hopefully with technology getting better and areas being more explored they will finally get hard proof that is needed to quiet the non believers!!!

  5. Many giants creature in the Philippines such as Agta, Ikugan (king-kong type), Buring Cantada, Gawi-gawen (six heads)Gisurab (schizo giant), and Bungisngis (ever smiling cyclops)

  6. I live in the Philippines, in the Visayas and it is interesting to hear people misrepresent the Kapre, which is well known as a myth as opposed to anything real. In the story above, "remote" Leyte is posed as if that meant something like "not many people". The Philippines is one of the most densely populated places on earth and Leyte is about 2,500 people per square mile. If you are from the Pacific Northwest as I am it is actually one of the depressing things about the Philippines - you just can't get away from people, even in what is posed as the Philippine "Last Frontier" on Palawan. A "bigfoot researcher" looks bad enough posing a gigantic creature in the vast expanse of the Pacific Northwest USA, but if you do so in a place that has a thousand times the population density in an area smaller than the county I grew up in then you are going to look extremely foolish.

  7. we have a farm in zambales , philippines . My grand father sleep outside our house , because of that he knows that kapre is real . he always tell us stories about it he saw it 5 times . he also said that kapres are friendly but but scary appearance.

  8. I was very skeptical of the existence of this creature until I experienced firsthand what it was like to be picked on by it. This happened last April 2015. It made me very ill, touched my arm, refused to let me sleep at night, lose track of time, urinated on my beddings when I decided to move house, stomped so hard on the ceiling, no amount of convincing can make me believe it was a cat. Yes, it did smell terrible, too.
    It only left me alone when I asked permission to stay. Suffice to say I left three days later. I did not like dealing with something I could not see.

  9. I am a mestizo Filipino American. I had spent some months as a child in the Philippines early on as an infant (mid 80's) and later as a young boy (early 90's). I spent majority of my time in the Visayan provinces of Samar. As a young boy with ADHD memory and experiences are very clear. I can recall the pizza pies in Manila and catching the fairy to head to the province as the young boys jumped off the ship for some pesos. During the day in the province, I would remember simple things like fresh pandesal and butter being sold door to door in the early mornings. I remember walking great distances with my cousin Padoy, to pump drinking water or buying soda from some shack and drinking it with a straw out of a ziplock bag because the owner wanted to recycle the glass bottles. I remember the aroma of the fresh BBQ Manok (chicken) at the local cock fights. During the day it was a hyperactive kids paradise. I could clime the coconut trees, ride the caribou, play with the pigs or whatever farm animal that could keep my attention. At night it was a different story. For the most part we had to stay in the hut as our kerosene lamps were lit. If I ever went out during the night, I had to always sit on my uncle Fernando's shoulder and stay quiet. He would utter some words and repeat them few feet as he walked and carried me through the dark streets. It was during that time when I would notice the red glowing eyes above the tall trees. It wasn't just one or two, but there were quite a few. When we finally reached the house I asked about the red eyes and what my uncle Fernando was saying. I was told that at night it is the spirits world and that he had to ask for permission to pass as he repeated to the spirits to excuse us. I made it a habit each night to look out the shutters of the hut and still those red eyes were there glowing above the coconut trees. There was another time that I recall waking up in the middle of the night to music and laughter. I stayed laying down and pretended that I was asleep. As I squinted my eyes and peeked through my mesquito net, there were awkwardly shaped creatures dancing and laughing around my auntie Terry. They were all different shapes and sizes and I recall a little one with a boom box. No one else woke up nor did I move to wake my mom because I was terrified. The dancing continued for quite sometime and eventually I fell asleep. I told my mother in the morning, but it seemed like I was just a kid who saw things as they joked about it in Tagalog or Visayan. Not too long after that I became very sick. They contacted the local witch doctor. I remember saying some chants and her spitting in some yellow powder and rubbing it on me. As I got older, I told my only biological aunt here in America (Aunti Yoli) about what happened. I say biological because in filipino traditon, everyone is your aunt. She's the oldest of the bunch of seven and she seemed to be the only one who immediately believed me. She said she believed because as a child she had a another sister. I asked my mother and she denied it. My auntie said my mother is the youngest and a baby at the time so, she wouldn't remember. This sister would always play under a particular tree and would always be talking to someone. Every day she was there playing around the tree. If her sister wasn't home they knew where they would find her, talking and playing under the tree. One day her little sister never came home and became missing. She swears that the spirits grew fond of her and that she was taken into the tree. I'm not sure if my auntie was pulling my leg, but from what I experienced first hand, I believe her.